I'm in wintertime garden planning mode and I've decided that this year I'm going to focus on growing more things that will impact our bottom line. I want to grow veggies that will taste good and give generously.
In the previous years I've taken to experimenting with dozens of varieties of vegetables in my garden. While I've found a few favorites that manage to be a good return on investment, plenty of my experiments have been a waste. I'm tired of cucumber plants that only produce three slow-growing fruits by fall, or greens that look good, but taste like pure bitterness.
My ideal answers will suggest a specific varieties (i.e. 'mortgage lifter tomato', or 'beet red ace F1'), especially anything that you've directly experienced. I also prefer to plant things that aren't found in the average grocery store, or even at the farmer's market. Tell me as much as you can about your favorites.
I'm certain that we will again be planting swiss chard, buttercrunch lettuce, zucchini, and at least six kinds of tomatoes. I also want to grow some ground cherries. Other than that, I'm open to suggestion. We can eat and cook almost everything.
I have a small urban yard that is shared with chickens who need their own space, so I would prefer to stay away from fruit trees or vines that take up a lot of ground. Other than that, we get lots of sunshine with some shade in areas, and have resident fertilizer makers. We also have several beds covering a variety of drainage conditions, and we've had good luck getting anything we try to grow to maturity. Our city is in hardiness zone 6.
I'd also love to hear tricks on how to get the most out of limited space.